Members of the transport sector in Barbados are uneasy about security and Covid-19. They said on Friday that these two issues continue to affect the way they conduct business.
Chairman of the Alliance Owners of Public Transport (AOPT) Roy Raphael told Barbados Today that despite recent assurances from Government and law enforcement officials that the crime situation was being addressed, operators were still on edge.
“The crime situation continues to be an issue for our operators out there, including the taxis. We understand the Government [and] the policies they would have put in place and so on, but we want a national discussion on the crime situation in this country and the way forward. A number of people would have called us and told us that there are few taxi operators who do not stop for them on the road anymore. If you go into Bridgetown after six o’clock you don’t really see a taxi,” he said.
He said “if you stop me as a taxi driver, I ain’t going to stop, that is the truth, because I am not going to expose myself to danger. Basically, I don’t know who you are so, therefore, we are saying that the Government needs to do something. It is affecting the way we do business, particularly those persons who work at night,”.
In Barbados, commuters are still required to wear masks but Raphael says a number of passengers are not complying,
“A lot of persons do not understand the COVID-19 regulations. The Government said that mask wearing was stopped and they just heard stop and everybody stopped wearing masks. It is a concern to us, not only on the public service vehicles (PSVs) but also on the Transport Board buses because we are seeing a lot of people on these buses not wearing masks, and there has been a spike in the COVID-19 pandemic [cases]